Sunday, 27 April 2014

S6.220 - Status Breaker

The Story So Far: After leaving Fractal City, personified math must deal with a wormhole that could bring them to Statistics... help point the way back home... or destroy them outright.

"I've got a bearing!" Signum called out.

"I've got a distance!" Maud added.

"Student's t is served!" Para said breathlessly, emerging from the gazebo with a cup and saucer in one hand. She jumped down onto the ground.

"30 seconds until I must blow out the wormhole," CanTor noted. "Meaning this whole area will get consumed pretty quickly... including that unstable temporal crack. Which would be bad."

Nisano adjusted his glasses. "You know, it occurs to me that we'll be centering mathematics on ourselves merely to have the entire subject get swallowed up by hyperspace. That would also be bad."

"Unless we transfer the wormhole away at the same time as we channel mathematics here," Hyper countered, putting her hands on her hips. Everyone turned to stare at her. "What? So long as you're using statistical magic to rewrite the laws of physics, you might as well handle the wormhole too. Surely it's a free action?"

"No, we can't!" Maud protested, stepping back from Signum. "What about Versine? And all of Q's people in math? They'd be doomed!"

The jewel on QT's bow pulsed. "It's okay," the polynomial said, expelling a breath of air. "Sigma says we can pull any existing personifications back here at the same time as I transfer the wormhole!"

"Ah, hate to be a killjoy, but there's hardly enough room on this isle for US, particularly with that Hyper Jumper in the way," Para remarked, setting the t-cup onto the ground. "How will you fit in anyone else?"

"Not HERE here, but back where it's safe, at the cliff edge," QT clarified. "Except if I'm going to do this, I need to start NOW! It will take ten seconds to build up a charge!"

"You have 15 seconds," CanTor noted.

QT jammed the end of her staff into the t-cup. The length began to vibrate and crackle with energy. A pair of wings sprouted out at the forked end, near to the jewel. Sigma's electronic voice came again. "Count IX. VIII. VII..." All of the energy in the area began to be drawn in towards QT. She began to glow faintly.

"Maud and Signum! Coordinates!" QT shouted. No sooner were the responses given, then a stray energy pulse hit the flux capacitor. It exploded. Nisano moved quickly to shield Hyper from the blast, and Maud pulled Signum back out of harm's way. The sparks of crackling energy continued to collect around the quartic function, now swirling around her, moving faster and faster.

"III... III... III..." Cosine shook her head to clear it, wondering if she'd really heard the count of 3 three times, or if the problem was in how space and time were starting to distort around all of them, the flux capacitor no longer regulating the rift.

"II... I... Count Zero." A large magical circle appeared under QT. She angled her staff forwards.

"Status.... BREAKER!" QT shrieked.


A huge ball of light appeared, and four beams of bright pink energy shot off the forked tines of the staff. Which is when CanTor's hand came down on the detonator. The Jump Gate ring shuddered as one of it's rails got blown off, and the wormhole, on the verge of collapsing down, thereby sending it's destructive shockwave back through hyperspace... instead had it's horizon expand out. Where it was immediately caught by two crackling pink energy fields. The other two energy fields were currently blasting a path deeply into the crack in reality, zeroing in on Maud's coordinates.

"Nnnn... NNNNGH..." QT gasped, sweat popping out on her brow, her whole body shuddering as the air continued to crackle with energy. She sank to one knee, but kept the staff aloft.

Hyper checked ArcSin for a pulse, then pushed him off of her. "I have to help," she murmured. "If I can. Too much pink energy is dangerous..." She pushed herself up, stumbled towards QT - and was repelled by the glowing energy around the magic circle.

Is it a victory?
Which is when Hyper noticed that Para and ParaB were phasing back together. They had already begun sliding towards one another, not of their own volition, and now the two bunny girls were beginning to overlap. Each quadratic stared at the other in shock, seemingly unable to prevent what was happening. "The Peabody-Sherman Effect," Hyper deduced. "Polynomial and conic, becoming one body again, as the infinite improbability field is undoing the effect of my Z-Axis Points Module!"

'I... I can't stop this!' Para thought at her counterpart, realizing she was becoming the dominant mind, ParaB's awareness getting submerged. 'I'm sorry!'

'It's okay... don't fight it, you might get hurt!' ParaB thought back. She swallowed. 'After all, it's as Koch said to me. If you go to Stat'st'cs, you won't die... and I didn't go. So I'm going to die.' A tear ran down her face. 'All I ask is... about QT... oh, QT, I'm so sorry! Para, please take care of her... I don't care if it's against our laws, I-I love--'

And just like that, the overlap was complete. ParaB was gone.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

S6.219 - Heart of Gold

The Story So Far: After leaving Fractal City, personified math must deal with a wormhole that could bring them to Statistics... help point the way back home... or destroy them outright.

"All we need now, is to see if our distance and direction pair can spot mathematics," Dr. Nisano concluded, careful not to speak too loud. "If so, we hop on the gazebo and go!"

Magnitude & Sign reunited
Maud and Signum eyed each other. Then they both extended out an arm, joining hands and pointing towards the crack in the air. "We'll be tapping into our latent abilities in order to search for Versine," Maud told his sister. "Her essence will be the same as Cosine's appearance now."

"Of course, her hair will be arcing the other way," Cosine quickly added. Signum nodded, moving her head in to touch it against Maud's forehead. Their eyes closed. Their index fingers began to move about in the air.

"We're not going anywhere though," ParaB said, disengaging from QT. "None of us."

"Beg to differ," CanTor said, pointing at the wormhole, which was now visibly pulsing, the rails of the Jump Gate starting to warp. "No way can we stay."

"On the contrary," ParaB said, tight lipped. "After a bit of time to think, I've figured out what Koch meant. If we go somewhere else, we won't die... but we'll still be at the mercy of higher powers. I'm done running. So, we're staying! And once Maud and Signum find mathematics, we'll act by bringing our subject BACK TO US."

For a moment, there was stunned silence. Then electricity arced out of the wormhole, got deflected by temporal energy from the rift, and very nearly took out the flux capacitor. Dr. Nisano yelped, and Tangent was unable to keep from screaming. "ParaB, staying isn't safe!!" QT pointed out.

"Safe is boring," the conic countered. "Safe is uninteresting, safe is not where the learning happens. We have to demonstrate that we're self-sufficient - and we'll probably never have a better opportunity than right now! Besides, we still don’t know what’s waiting for us in our subject, and I wager our accuracy chances haven’t improved THAT much from the original 1%. On the other hand, QT, I'm guessing you're somehow interfacing with statistics. How much access DO you have to probability?"

QT eyed her large factoring fork. "I-I'm not sure... why?"

"You want to take advantage of the warped reality in order to increase our chances of something crazy working," Hyper reasoned. "Now that's some good conic thinking!" Her eyes narrowed. "Wait, how crazy, exactly?"

ParaB took in a deep breath. "Infinite improbability."

QT's eyes went wide. "Wow. Give me a moment..." She closed her eyes, and the crystal on her bow shone a bright red for a moment. "Sigma thinks it can be done! We just need a fresh cup of very hot Student's t-distribution. As many degrees as possible!"

"I'll get Para to bring one out," ParaB concluded.

"Hm! Mixing normal with abnormal to pull infinity into a finite space," CanTor mused. "How very fractal of you. Unfortunately, I don't think your improbability field will last very long."

"We won't NEED it for long," ParaB shot back. "Now, when will you have no choice but to blow the Gate, in order to save the network?"

"In 47 seconds."

ParaB grimaced. "QT, is that enough--"

"Shooting Mode, Acceleration," came a female electronic voice from QT's forked staff. The inset crystal pulsed with light. "I can be shot."

"S-Sigma seems to be good to go," QT stammered. "Moreover, she thinks that with infinite improbability in place, a blast aimed into the crack, directed precisely towards mathematics... would initiate transference. Our subject could be channelled back here, while this Purgatory would be sent over there. Same basic idea as the original Cone of Science, but with a concept, not our physical selves."

Tangent leaned in towards Cosine. "Uhm, should we maybe ask about the possibility of success for this plan??" she muttered.

Cosine shook her head. "NO. Never tell me the odds."

Sunday, 13 April 2014

S6.218 - Cracking Up

The Story So Far: After leaving Fractal City, personified math must deal with a wormhole that could bring them to Statistics... help point the way back home... or destroy them outright.

"It's time. We have to evacuate into hyperspace, and blow the wormhole remotely," CanTor stated bluntly.

"NO!" QT protested. "ParaB and Signum WILL get here, we HAVE to let--"

"Look at the time! You've got less than four minutes!" the fractal retorted sternly. A bolt of lightning zapped out of the overcharging wormhole, discharging into the atmosphere.

QT sucked her lower lip into her mouth. The red jewel on her front pulsed again. "Sigma says there's still a statistical chance. I'm waiting!" Most of personified math was now out of sight, having hurriedly boarded Logan's ship. The gazebo was now floating nearby, ready to pick the rest of them up. The only people still out by the Jump Gate with CanTor and QT were: Maud, Cosine, Tangent, Hyper, and Dr. Nisano. They all exchanged uncertain glances.

"Flux capacitor... fluxing," Nisano remarked to no one in particular.

"Damn. Damn, damn," QT whispered, clasping her hands together and bringing them to her heart. She turned to face the wormhole. "Come on, ParaB... please, I... I have such a deep regard for you....!"

The gate chevrons began to light up. As they finished, a Hyper Jumper was expelled from the network with a sound like a sonic boom. The small ship executed a whiplash spin in the air before setting itself down on the platform, not far from the Dial Out Device. The hatch at the back immediately began to open, and the orange haired parabola vaulted through the space as soon as it was large enough to accommodate her.

QUIZ: Can you spot all the SciFi references in this episode?

"You're late! Do you have no concept of time??" QT chided, running towards the other woman, tears stinging the corners of her eyes. She wasn't sure if she was more upset or relieved.

"Hey, come on!" ParaB retorted. "How could I know this Jumper was preprogrammed for the steppe?? Me and Signum, we had to drop off Heaviside and Flora first - we got here as soon as we could!" The two math relations met in an embrace, QT burying her head in ParaB's shoulder. The conic squeezed hard, almost lifting QT off her feet. "This a new look for you? I like it."

"Oh, gag me," Hyper said, rolling her eyes. "Okay ArcSin, let's tear it up. You sure your brother's calculations were accurate?"

"Hey! Don't ever take sides with anyone against my family!" Nisano warned, shaking his finger at her.

"Speaking of family," Maud remarked, grinning as Signum emerged from the ship too, "how has my step sister been?" He went to grasp her hand.

"Stressed!" the step function retorted. "I got shot through a wormhole. I'm in a distant part of the universe!"

Cosine sighed. "Everyone's reuniting with their loved ones," the tall trig function murmured sadly. "If only..."

Tangent reached out and squeezed Cosine's hand. "I'm here for you. Think calming music. Maud and Signum need you as OneMinusCos, to find Versine. You can handle that! I know you can! ...cos-tan."

Mighty Morphism
Cosine smiled despite herself at Tangent's use of the silly moniker. "Right." She stepped to the side, pulling some hair back off one ear, with her other hand tapping at her belt buckle. "It's morphism time! Cosine, transforming!"

An axis flower sprouted out near the edge of Cosine's wavy hair. The twelve petals rotated, then unfolded, to reveal the number 1. At the same time, a necklace appeared in the air, the ends of it encircling Cosine's neck and clasping itself in behind. As the pendant for the necklace settled onto her chest, it flashed a large minus sign. "Negated amplitude, axis up one!" the brunette declared.

"Tear a-forming now!" Nisano advised, flipping a final switch. Sparks flew everywhere, not just from the flux capacitor, but also the wormhole itself. Then, in the air, a large crack opened up in the fabric of reality.

"Oooooh, that's disturbing," CanTor said, looking worried as temporal energy began to spill out. "Tell me when it's safe to blow out the wormhole, Doctor Nisano."

"Doctor... Who?" Signum yelled, raising a hand to her ear. Her words seemed to echo in the air.

"Don't shout!" Hyper hissed, crossing her arms. "Your words might spill through that crack into alternate realities!"

Maud pursed his lips. "I seem to be having a tremendous difficulty with my lifestyle," he observed.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

S6.217 - Give Me a Sine

The Story So Far: After leaving Fractal City, personified math must deal with a wormhole that could bring them to Statistics... help point the way back home... or destroy them outright.

"It occurs to me that we have a problem."

"Just one?" Cotangent said dryly. She had moved off to the side, to allow Root, Hyper and the science trigonometry to monitor the flux capacitor.

Maud grimaced. "One more problem then. In terms of locating mathematics." He tugged on his earlobe. "See, me and Signum, we can't centre in on a location unless it contains something familiar. I've been trying to think of what we can use."

Cot placed her hands on her hips. "Are ye sayin' there's nothin' familiar ta ye in mathematics??"

"Not exactly... it's the revised mathematics that this Q seems to have created which worries me. It may be totally different," Maud pointed out. "Plus any things that are the same there may ALSO be found here, confusing us. I only know of one exception." He paused.


Maud sighed. "It's... okay, here's the thing. The reason Elly had been trying to make contact with mathematics was to get help for Cosine. Specifically, she was looking for Versed Sine."

"VERSINE?!" Cotangent sputtered. Everyone now turned to regard their conversation. Maud winced.

"Yes," the modulus function continued. "And according to Elly, Versine IS there. Now, I've been trying to think of an alternative item to centre on... but, I've got nothing," Maud sighed. "So, while Q's Versine might be different, she must remain recognizable as '1 - cos(x)', meaning with Cosine's help, me and Signum could locate..."

"Cosine," ArcCos cut in with a glare. "Who's been overworked AND has been suffering from depression ever since her sister's death. Are you serious?!"

Maud straightened his posture. "If you have an alternative, I'd love to hear it." The two of them glared at each other until Root stepped between them.

"Look at it this way," Root suggested, attempting a smile. "If we get back to math... Q might have a Sine there! Cosine could be helping to reunite the two of them."

Cotangent exchanged a surprised look with the other trigonometry. "Och. That had nae occurred ta me. Though... at this point, I'm nae sure if such a meeting would be for th' better. Especially if there's a Cosine there too."

ArcCos pursed his lips. "That said - I have no better suggestion. All right, Maud, Versine it is. But let me be the one to break the news to Cosine, once Logan's gazebo gets back."

"I hope that'll be fast," Can-Tor remarked as she approached. "Explosive devices are installed, and I'll have to blow them in the next... 7 minutes and 22 seconds." She held up her iPad.

"What?! Let me see that," Hyper groused, grabbing the device from the much shorter woman.

"Hmph. Rude much?" Dr. Nisano said to Hyper, tugging down on the lapels of his lab coat.

"Oh, shut up," Hyper shot back. "At this rate, I'll never get to do my own union with Sigma! Stupid polynomials, bloody QT..."

"Look on the bright side," Root offered up again. "QT will be dependent on Hyper if she wants to exceed the Geometric distribution... right?"